GrWebDev - Grand Rapids Web Development Group
28 Feb-1 Mar 2011 (Add to calendar) GMT
(Exact location not available) , Grand Rapids, US


Unless you've had your head buried deep in IE6 compatibility code, you've surely noticed that everyone is talking about startups lately. Being a curious and intelligent beng, we're sure you have some questions about this phenomenon. What is a startup? How can you get started with startups? How can I make bazillions of dollars with a startup? Now that I have bazillions of dollars and years of hard-won startup-related wisdom, how can I help other startups?

We'll be answering these sorts of questions and more at the next GrWebDev meeting, so come join us!

Socializing and Networking 
5:45PM - 6:15PM

Drop in before the presentations to pick brains and rub elbows with other members. We'll also try to have the food set up so you can grab a bite before the main event begins.

6:15PM ~ 6:20PM

Sponsor recognition, Miscellaneous babbling.

The Main Event 
6:15PM ~ 7:15PM

We have scoured the earth and found five of the most knowledgable and interesting people to answer your Startup-related questions in a panel format. Amanda Chocko of Momentum, Aaron Schaap of ElevatorUp, Ryan H. Vaughn of The Varsity News Network, Jason Carpenter of Classic Labs, and Jeanne Ferro of the Michigan Small Business and Technology Development Center will begin by introducing themselves and their organizations. They will then make their wisdom and experience available to help you get a handle on starting a business or contributing to a startup.


To make this work, we need you to bring questions for our panelists. We've all thought about sticking it to the man and starting a business, but most of us haven't followed through. Let's rack our brains for the reason why and let the panelists tell us how we can make it happen.


We will follow up the panel talk with 5 minute lightening talks from you, our members. If you'd like to do a lightening talk, please sign up in the comments below or email one of the organizers.


About the Panelists

Aaron Schaap: Aaron is the Founder/CEO of - a company that focuses on solving the problem of retention and aggregation of cloud data. He's also founded various other companies like, Elevator Up, Canvas and the Factory, along with helping create and foster events and groups in West Michigan. Aaron brings a strong passion for community and wants people to focus less on the West Michigan bullshit around being an entrepreneur and spend their time "Strategically Doing" instead of "Strategic Planning". More on Aaron by txting "schaapy" to 50500.


Amanda Chocko: Amanda is the Program Director for Momentum where she is responsible for marketing, recruitment, event planning, program development and execution.  Prior to working with Momentum she was the Director of Entrepreneurial Development at Lakeshore Advantage where she managed their technology business incubator, The Lakeshore Business Garden.  Amanda has over 15 years of entrepreneurial, business management and event planning experience. She is a certified small business counselor and has played a key role in business incubation in the West Michigan region.


Jason Carpenter:  Jason is a co-founder of Ascribe.  Ascribe is a web based application used the by the construction industry to mange and promote profiles of their past building projects.  He has spent the last 15 years focus on engineering, marketing and entrepreneurial activities, such as founding a national consulting network for CAD professionals.  Jason's formal eduction includes a Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering and a Marketing MBA from WMU.


Jeanne Ferro: Jeanne has held positions with companies in several industries including manufacturing, retail, construction and banking.  She has been a consultant with the MI-SBTDC (Michigan Small Business and Technology Development Center) for ten years and has experience in marketing, training, small business consulting, event planning, and business coaching.


Ryan H. Vaughn: Ryan is a maker of things and a connector of dots.  He is the co-founder of Varsity News Network and the founder of West Michigan Allstar. He is also a huge fan of sports analogies.


7:15PM ~ 7:45PM

Join others for smaller, focused discussions immediately after the main event.

Post-Meeting Activities 
Join other members for drinks and discussion at Founders afterwards. If you'd like to suggest a different or additional post-meeting location, please let us know about it.


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